Gun Owners in the Valley Desperate for Ammo -, GA News Weather & Sports

Gun Owners in the Valley Desperate for Ammo

By Laura Ann Sills - email

COLUMBUS, GA (WTVM) - In this economy people are supposedly spending less, but ammo retailers are finding it hard to keep their shelves stocked.

There are a few reasons why distributors think they can't keep up with demand.

First, The Military's use is at an all time high.

"Nato rounds for example, 9 millimeter, 45, 762, and 556 sometimes can be a problem to find. Production has been ramped up by the major manufactures to supply the Military, that's the priority. We as civilian commercial purchasers understand that, says Manager at Shooter's of Columbus, John Wilkes.

Americans usually buy 7 billion rounds of ammo a year. That figure jumped to 9 billion in the past year.  Retailers are seeing ammo fly out the door, and the prices sky rocket, more than doubling in the last year.

A second reason for the lack of supplies is the cost of brass, lead and copper, the raw materials needed, have increased.

 Hunter and Columbus resident, Israel Glawson, was in Shooter's on Saturday and agrees the prices have increased.  "It costs a little more, but you've got to do what you've got to do to get your ammo."

When Glawson can't find what he needs in stores he turns to the Internet to buy in bulk.

People began stock piling ammo when President Obama took office, fearing higher taxes or other restraints put on ammo and firearms.

"Starting to see that the demand for hand gun ammo has caused a shortage in rifle ammo, probably because of primers," says Dean King, owner of Alpine Pawn and Sporting Goods. 

Even with manufactures ramping up production, it's still not enough. At King's store, like others in the Valley, ammunition for hand guns is being rationed. To get a box of 380, you must purchase a pistol to go with it.

"We try to ration them and limit the amount a single customer can buy. We try to give every customer an equal opportunity to purchase primers, wether it's for pistols or rifles or whatever they use," says Wilkes.

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